The Gentrification "Opportunity"?

Gentrification is usually described by commenters here as a bad thing for low income and minority families, and indeed bad things sometimes happen in the process of school gentrification. But as I've written several times in the past  it doesn't have to be that way (and indeed is not always as overwhelmingly negative an experience as is presented here).  Thinking about gentrification in black and white terms doesn't really help.  Neighborhoods become safer, parent involvement can increase, and enrichment programs get added.  These are all things that everyone wants, and indeed things that happen in neighborhoods with economic development even where there's no change in the racial distribution of the neighborhood. Families have been priced out of Little Village and Pilsen just like Logan Square and Avondale.  The main culprit, in my opinion, is the reduction in Title I funding that straps these schools just they need a little bit of consistency and to add programs.  What's got me thinking about the topic is this blog post from a DC think tank about the fastest-gentrifying zip codes in the nation, one of which is 60604 in Chicago.  It's described as a once in a lifetime opportunity to do some integration.  Is that true?  Any places where that's happening -- integration without massive displacement?  We already know all the gentrification horror stories, so no need to share those again.

 

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